Zacuto USA 2014-09-18T18:55:32Z WordPress Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Austin, TX – Precision Camera & Video]]> 2014-09-11T17:22:08Z 2014-09-11T17:21:44Z Precision Camera & Video
2438 West Anderson Lane, Suite B-4
Austin TX 78757

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Canon C300/500 Recoil Review by JJ Kelley]]> 2014-09-09T15:00:17Z 2014-09-05T18:11:19Z
National Geographic’s JJ Kelley treks through Africa capturing the beauty of the country with his C300 camera and Zacuto Recoil shoulder mounted rig. Running through jungles to catch that perfect shot, his gear must be totally adaptable on this unpredictable shoot.

He’s using Zacuto’s C300/C500 Z-Finder, Grip Relocator, Helmet Coldshoe Handle Kit and Z-Drive/Tornado Follow Focus to complete his C300 rig.

For more information on the gear JJ used please call us at 312 863 3452 or email
2photo ADD_3998 IMG_0023 photo 2 photo JJ Kelley Nat Geo Featured Image

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Top Tips for the Wedding Storyteller by Michael Liu]]> 2014-09-05T17:27:32Z 2014-09-05T16:34:20Z  The Wedding StorytellerThe rise of digital filmmaking, through tools like DSLR video, has opened new doors and created higher standards throughout the event filmmaking industry.

This is not lost on brides in this detail-heavy industry. More and more brides are demanding higher quality wedding films from boutique wedding cinematography companies.

So, here’s my top four tips for new and beginning event filmmakers:


1) Story Is Everything

Our main goal as event cinematographers is to satisfy our customers. The best way to do that is to make sure the story of the couple is being told. Early on, even before signing the contract, we need to “survey” or research our subjects and determine what their story is. I usually take the time, before getting down to the nitty gritty, to get to know the couple. For instance, find out how they met, what kind of wedding they envision, and what they love. I’ll often speak to the couple’s family and friends as well. You’d be surprised how much insider information you can get from a five minute conversation with the grooms best friend.

Case and point: in this last wedding I shot, I found out the bride and groom met through an online game called World of Warcraft. After learning this bit of information, I chose specific shots throughout the wedding to highlight their online gaming love affair.

 2) Make Specific Choices

That means camera angles and camera movement, in particular. You also need to specifically plan the basics like deciding when to roll the camera. Having a solid pre-production plan is vital. This allows you to make informed decisions while shooting on the fly. Should you shoot with a tight lens versus a wide angle lens? How are you going to utilize your camera support? The more you know about your couple, their family, and their overall plans for the event, the better.

3) Use The Right Gear

For me, having the right tools at the right time is key to having a successful day of shooting. I use an ultra portable, foldable rig from Zacuto called the Enforcer that will fit in any small camera bag or even your pocket. They don’t call it run and gun for nothing.

What I love about the Enforcer is that you can literally set up and have a stable handheld shot in seconds. Larger rigs usually need a separate case just to transport, and can take a long time to set up. The Enforcer eliminates all of that frustration while giving you three points of contact for a smooth, stable shot. It’s also super fast to pack away and move onto something like a slider, jib or Steadicam.

4) Mic your subjects

You can always spot the amateur against the pros by the way the audio sounds. In the wedding business, you only get one shot to capture that perfect moment. Having good, clean sound not only makes you stand out among your competitors but it can save you in post as well. Good audio can carry cuts and b-roll and help support your main goal, telling a good story.

I hope these tips help some of you on your next wedding. I’ve barely scratched the surface of all the things that go into a wedding production, but like everything else, practice is everything. The most important thing is to get out there, shoot, and make mistakes. Until you try it, you’ll never know.

Happy shooting!


Michael Liu is the creative Director at Matchstix Studios and a video producer at Biola University. Matchstix Studios is a premier wedding cinematography studio based in Orange County, CA.

Eric Marsh <![CDATA[Zeiss and Canon Lens Supports]]> 2014-09-05T18:23:08Z 2014-09-05T15:36:49Z Zeiss and Canon Lens SupportsWith a wide variety of lens mount adapters from aftermarket companies and the camera companies themselves, we’re no longer held back by a camera’s default lens mount.

How do you securely support these often long and heavy lenses, particularly on DSLR cameras with only one screw mount connecting a camera to a baseplate? And, how do you get that support without adding an arduous screw mount procedure to every lens change? These questions and challenges inspired the Zacuto design team to create the Canon Lens Support and Zeiss Lens Support.

Watch as Zacuto product designers, Jens Bogehegn and Rob Vose, discuss the Zeiss and Canon Lens Supports

Designed for Zeiss CP.2 lenses and Canon cinema and compact prime lens, these innovative new lens supports combine a ‘hook and foot’ mechanism with a quick release lightweight rod mount. You’ve never seen lens supports like these before! Slide the rod mount hook onto rods under your lens and screw the included foot connectors into the underside of your lenses. The hook and foot click into place as you secure your lens onto the camera lens mount. And the best part is, there’s no additional work required when changing lenses.

You can purchase these products through the Zacuto store or your local dealer. The Canon Lens Support and Zeiss Lens Support both come with four individual foot connectors. You can also purchase a set of two Canon or Zeiss foot connectors separately to accommodate additional lenses.

Questions? Comments? Queries? Our friendly Zacuto sales and customer service team are always ready to help! Call 312 863 3452 or email us.


Canon Lens Support

Canon Lens Support with Camera Canon Lens Support with Camera Close Canon Lens Support with Camera - Broad View Canon Lens Support 2 Piece Canon Lens Support

Zeiss Lens Support

Zeiss Lens Support with Camera Zeiss Lens Support with Camera Close Zeiss Lens Support with Camera Seperate   Zeiss Lens Support without camera Zeiss Lens Support Together

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[HDVideoPro Magazine—The Chicago Way]]> 2014-09-05T21:51:01Z 2014-09-05T15:33:10Z HDVideoPro magazine editor, Neil Matsumoto, visited the Zacuto offices for a unique tour earlier this year. He spoke with Steve and Jens about being video pioneers, the origins of Zacuto, new products, and the democratization of filmmaking…

“Oh, I hate that word!” shouts Zacuto director and product designer Steve Weiss in his office when I bring up the word “democratization” in regard to filmmaking. “I have to stop you right now. This is not a democracy. The fact that they say that video is accessible to everybody is socialism.”

Read the full article here.

1-lg 2-lg 3-lg 4-lg 5-lg Steve Weiss and Jens Bogehegn at Zacuto Headquarters ]]>
Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Zacuto Survey: Rules & Regulations]]> 2014-07-28T15:39:36Z 2014-07-24T16:16:28Z


1.Promotion Description: The ‘Zacuto Survey Drawing’ (“Drawing”) begins on July 26th, 2014 at 12:00 AM (Central Time (US & Canada)) and ends on August 31st, 2014 at 11:59 PM (Central Time (US & Canada)) (the “Promotion Period”). By participating in the Drawing, each entrant unconditionally accepts and agrees to comply with and abide by these Official Rules and the decisions of Zacuto USA (“Sponsor”), which shall be final and binding in all respects. Sponsor is responsible for the collection, submission or processing of Entries and the overall administration of the giveaway. Entrants should look solely to Sponsor with any questions, comments or problems related to the Drawing.

2.Eligibility: Open to entrants who are eighteen (18) years or older. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. Sponsor and their respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, distributors, retailers, sales representatives, advertising and promotion agencies and each of their respective officers, directors and employees (collectively, the “Promotion Entities”), and members of their immediate families and/or persons living in the same household as such persons, are ineligible to enter the Drawing or win a prize.

3.Winner Selection: The winner of the Drawing will be selected via a random drawing (by a third party service) of the eligible Entries received throughout the Promotion Period. The information obtained through the survey and entry into the Drawing will be used solely for internal purposes. The information will not be shared with other parties.

Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible Entries received. Winner will be notified by email at the email address provided in the Entry by September 3rd, 2014 after the random drawing. Potential winner must accept a prize by email as directed by Sponsor by September 8th, 2014. Any winner notification not responded to or returned as undeliverable may result in prize forfeiture and another winner selected. The potential prize winner may be required to sign and return an affidavit of eligibility and release of liability, and a Publicity Release (collectively “the Prize Claim Documents”). No substitution or transfer of a prize is permitted except by Sponsor.

4. Prizes:
•One (1) Grand Prize winner will receive $1,000 Zacuto Gift Card (approximate retail value or “ARV”: $1,000)

Gift cards and gift certificates are subject to the terms and conditions of the issuer. Prize cannot be transferred, redeemed for cash or substituted by winner. Sponsor reserves the right in its sole and absolute discretion to award a substitute prize of equal or greater value if a prize described in these Official Rules is unavailable or cannot be awarded, in whole or in part, for any reason. The ARV of the prize represents Sponsor’s good faith determination. That determination is final and binding and cannot be appealed. If the actual value of the prize turns out to be less than the stated ARV, the difference will not be awarded in cash. Sponsor makes no representation or warranty concerning the appearance, safety or performance of any prize awarded. Restrictions, conditions, and limitations may apply. Sponsor will not replace any lost or stolen prize items.

Prize will only be awarded and/or delivered to addresses given. All federal, state and/or local taxes, fees, and surcharges are the sole responsibility of the prize winner. Failure to comply with the Official Rules will result in forfeiture of the prize.

5. Entry: Entrants enter the Drawing during the Promotion Period online by completing the survey at this address: Automated or robotic Entries submitted by individuals or organizations will be disqualified. Internet entry must be made by the entrant. Any attempt by an entrant to obtain more than the stated number of Entries by using multiple/different email addresses, identities, registrations, logins or any other methods, including, but not limited to, commercial contest/sweepstakes subscription notification and/or entering services, will void that entrant’s Entries and that entrant may be disqualified. Final eligibility for the award of any prize is subject to eligibility verification as set forth below. All Entries must be posted by the end of the Promotion Period in order to participate. Sponsor’s database clock will be the official time keeper for this Drawing.

6. Privacy: All entrants acknowledge that if they are chosen as a winner, certain basic personally identifying information (i.e. entrant’s name) may be disclosed to other parties only as required by law, including, without limitation, on a winner’s list. No other personally identifying information will be shared with third parties.

7. Limitation of Liability: Sponsor is not responsible for any incorrect or inaccurate information, whether caused by website users or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Drawing or by any technical or human error, which may occur in the processing of submissions in the Drawing. Sponsor assumes no responsibility for any misdirected or lost mail, or any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay of operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of, Entries. Sponsor is not responsible for any problems or technical malfunction of any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, servers or providers, computer equipment, software, failure of email or players on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or at any website or combination thereof, including injury or damage to entrant’s or any other person’s computer related to or resulting from participating downloading materials in the Drawing. If, for any reason, the Drawing is not capable of running as planned, including infection by computer virus bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes beyond the control of Sponsor which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the Drawing, then Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Drawing. In such event, Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, perform the judging of all eligible Entries received prior to or after such cancellation, suspension, or modification. In the event of a dispute concerning who registered online to participate in the Drawing, the registration will be declared to have been made by the authorized account holder is defined as the natural person who is assigned to an email address by an internet provider, online service provider, or other organization (e.g., business, education institution, etc.) that is responsible for assigning email addresses for the domain associated with the submitted email address. A potential winner may be requested to provide Sponsor with proof that the potential winner is the authorized account holder of the email address. If a dispute cannot be resolved to Sponsor’s satisfaction, the entry will be deemed ineligible.

8. Winner’s List: To obtain a copy of any legally required winners list or a copy of the Official Rules, send the applicable request and a self-addressed, stamped, #10 envelope to:

Zacuto USA
cc: Zacuto Survey Drawing
401 W Ontario St, Suite 100
Chicago, IL 60654

Requests must be received no later than six (6) months after the end of the Drawing.

9. Sponsor: The Drawing is sponsored by:

Zacuto USA
401 W Ontario St, Suite 100
Chicago, IL 60654

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Featured Filmmaker – David Barnes]]> 2014-07-14T20:26:29Z 2014-07-11T15:21:48Z davidbarnes-999x562
The Same But Different project opens the viewer’s eyes and mind to the everyday lives of children with differences. Meet David Barnes, the EMMY award winning filmmaker who was inspired to tell these unique stories.

We at Zacuto were instantly hooked on David’s stunning story telling style and love that these shorts were shot on a DSLR – a Canon 5DM2 and 7D.  We decided to turn the tables and find out more about his inspiration and journey.

Tell us about about Theo’s Story and the Same But Different project.

Theo’s Story is one of eight documentary portraits from Same But Different, an International Emmy Award winning collection of shorts featuring children with differences from across the UK who explain “what it’s like to be me”. The films have been praised for their non-patronising approach. Theo’s blind and he hates it when people are too nice to him. He’s an inspiring character and, at ten years old, his outlook on life is very profound.

The project originated as a co-production between myself and Louise Lynch of Libra Television. Louise and I came up with the format which BBC Learning commissioned as part of a disability season. The films were primarily aimed at children aged 7 to 11 and intended to help them empathize with, and better understand, those who might be considered different.

When was the moment you knew you wanted to be a filmmaker?

I don’t really know if there was one eureka moment. I’ve always loved creating, be that in photography, music or writing stories, and I realised in my early twenties that film combines all these disciplines. I was working in advertising at the time but it wasn’t what I wanted to do for the rest of my life so I gave it up and went back to college.  I started working my way up the industry whilst making shorts in my spare time. Looking back, some of my early films make me cringe but I’m proud of the fact I was making my own stuff. It didn’t occur to me to give up. I just kept going, got a bit better at it and now I’m pleased to be able to make my living this way.

Winning the EMMY for Same But Different.

Who inspires you?

Such a hard question! Inspiration can take lots of forms. I find many filmmakers, known and unknown, inspiring both in their work and their approach. All the obvious great directors and filmmakers including Guillermo del Toro, George Lucas, Stephen Spielberg, Stanley Kubrick, James Cameron, Ridley Scott, Werner Herzog and hundreds of others but also lots of lesser known filmmakers like Philip Bloom, Shane Carruth, Stu Maschwitz, Sing J Lee, Christian Schultz, Colin O’Toole and Shona Auerbach.

I am inspired by awesome composers such as Clint Mansell, Philip Glass, Hans Zimmer, Johnny Marr and authors such as Joe Haldeman and Peter F Hamilton and large morality tales found in sci-fi narratives in video games such as Mass Effect, Half Life and Portal. Many of those inspirations aren’t actually reflected directly my work in terms of subject matter.  For me, I try and take various inspirations and make work that is meaningful and has a message which is told in an emotive way and occasionally it works. It’s har
d to look at Theo’s Story and then compare it to the above examples in terms of genre but emotionally I think those inspirations seep through.

What advice would you like to pass along to filmmakers looking to make a difference in the world?

I’m not sure what advice I can give…..I suppose it would be if you have a message that’s worth passing on or a great story to tell, make sure you tell it. Film is such a powerful medium, it incorporates all the arts and if well executed can be very effective. If you persevere and are passionate then you can make a difference, even if it’s a small one. Jason Russell is a great example of a film maker who has actually made a real change with Kony 2012. That’s super inspiring.

Filming Same But Different on Location Lunchtime! Same but Different in the classroom. The editing room. davidbarnes-999x562 DavidBarnesEmmy


David is a director and producer based at MediaCityUK. He loves to write, shoot, edit and tell stories, particularly in collaboration with others. In 2014 David was awarded an International Emmy for “Same But Different” a series of documentary portraits he directed. Other directing work includes music videos for Johnny Marr, Suede and Soul Inscribed as well as TV commercials and a series of online comedy animated shorts. His work has been nominated for awards including two BAFTAs, Royal Television Society, Kidscreen, Broadcast Digital, Japan Prize and he’s a recipient of a Roses Award and Young Co-Operative Filmmakers Award.

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Zacuto Rentals and the Striker Rig by Daniel Ryan]]> 2014-06-18T14:50:06Z 2014-06-18T14:46:43Z Zacuto DSLR Striker RigI direct and shoot all over the world, and Zacuto gear is always in tow. Whether it’s hanging out of a helicopter, discovering abandoned towns, hiking through snow-covered mountains or shooting live music on tour – I need gear that is reliable in any situation or climate.

I’ve been using a Striker rig for the past several years for doc-type shoots because of its portability and discreetness. Along with the rig, I always use a Z-Finder EVF Pro. I can’t stress how crucial these tools have been over the years, especially outdoors and on the go. They make my job exponentially easier and anything I ever need to round out my camera package is only a phone call away with their rental department.

Zacuto has been involved with every single shoot of mine the world over and the customer service is first and foremost why I always return. Rental extensions, loyalty deals and overall help whenever I need it is incomparable to the other rental houses I have worked with. Also, they are constantly improving their existing gear and coming up with new rigs that I can’t wait to try out. Zacuto really is my one stop shop for everything I need when prepping to leave for a shoot.


Rent your own Striker rig and Z-Finder EVF Pro and more from Zacuto Rentals.  Call us at 312-863-3453 or email

Daniel Ryan is a Director who has worked on numerous projects including producing the music series FOR NO ONE, video content for Altoid’s Hall of Curiosity as well as live concert footage and photography from Moscow for CNN and Regina Spektor. Find out more about Daniel Ryan here.  And follow him on Twitter @danielryanvideo.

At the Sydney Opera House with the Zacuto EVF Using the Striker Rig in Colorado Shooting Cal Ripken Filming in Moscow Red Square At the zoo with the Zacuto Striker Using the EVF on location Zacuto DSLR Striker Rig ]]>
Eric Marsh <![CDATA[Zacuto New Products]]> 2014-09-18T18:55:32Z 2014-06-09T09:00:21Z We’re excited to announce our new products – the Gratical HD and LT EVF, VCT Universal Baseplate, Control Grip, Z18 and Z8 Tripods. See below for an overview of the of the new products!

Projected release dates as of September 2014:
VCT Universal Baseplate – September/October 2014
Gratical HD EVF – January 15, 2015
Gratical LT EVF – Early 2015
Z18 and Z8 Tripod – Fall 2014
Control Grip – Early 2015


To stay up to date on the latest, sign up for our newsletter and follow us on social media - TwitterFacebook, and Vimeo.

We’ve received an overwhelmingly positive response to our new Gratical HD EVF, Z18 Tripod and VCT Universal baseplate. Watch this interview from Dan Chung in the live stream Teradek NAB studio with Zacuto owners and product designers, Steve and Jens, talking about these new products.


Check out these other interviews from your favorite bloggers and reviewers! Wide Open Camera, Next WaveDV, Newsshooter, No Film School, B&H PhotoPro Video Coalition, Bay Tiger, Cinema 5D, Lens Pro Lab and Production Hub.

The Gratical HD & LT micro-OLED EVF

Introducing the Gratical series by Zacuto – a whole new concept EVF. Over a year in the making, Zacuto brought five different engineering companies together to bring our newest EVF concept to life. The Gratical HD and LT electronic viewfinders use an extremely powerful FPGA dual core processor and the latest Micro-OLED displays to provide a hugely expanded contrast range. The current traditional 3″ EVFs were created from telephone displays and the resolution, contrast and sharpness were marginal at best. This new Micro OLED technology, harnessed by Zacuto, makes those telephone screens a thing of the past.

Gratical HD

Screen Dimensions  0.61″ diagonal
Resolution Full Display 1280×1024, 16×9, 1280×720 HD
Color Depth 24 bit RGB
Luminance 120-250 cd/m^2
Contrast Ratio 10,000:1
Refresh Rate 50/60Hz
Pixel Info 2687.21 PPI, 5.4 million pixels, 16.7 million colors

Gratical LT

Screen Dimensions 0.39″ diagonal
Resolution Full Display 1044×768, 16×9, 1024×576, 82% HD
Color Depth 24 bit RGB
Luminance 120-250 cd/m^2
Contrast Ratio 10,000:1
Refresh Rate 50/60Hz
Pixel Info 1718.1 PP1, 3.3 million pixels, 16.7 million colors

The Gratical HD EVF won NewBay Media’s Best in Show Award from Digital Video at NAB. We put the 1280×1024 HD resolution and micro-OLED screen of our Gratical up against the RED Bomb and an Alphatron for comparison.

Rodney Charters, ASC CSC, using the Gratical HD with a Canon C300Rodney Charters, ASC CSC, using the Gratical HD with a Canon C300

The Gratical HD EVF looks so sharp, the color rendition and scopes are going to make it the go-to optical viewfinder. Those Zacuto boys have done it again!
- Rodney Charters, ASC CSC

The Gratical EVF looks amazing. The colour and the tonal range of the image is better than any other EVF I’ve seen. I love the ability to add LUTs and cross conversion. The design is great too – especially having the rosette on the side for easy mounting.
- Dan Chung,

The new Gratical HD EVF features not only HDMI or SDI, but both, and it can cross convert. It supports viewing LUTs and can even export them to the Director’s display so everyone on set is seeing what the Cinematographer intends them to see.  Other such high-end features include a built-in Wave Form, Histogram, False Color, Focus Assist, and Pixel-to-Pixel zoom, not to mention the OLED’s brilliant colors, rich blacks, and great contrast.  All this and more is offered in a very reasonably priced package that will allow you to quickly amortize your investment.
- James Mathers, Cinematographer,

Z18 and Z8 Tripod

Zacuto is entering a new realm with the introduction of the z18 and Z8 tripod. Fluid tripod heads are equipped with graded drag and counterbalance to ensure frictionless operation with a smooth pan and tilt. Both models include center spreaders, rubber removable feet and a case for fast camera setup and easy operation.

Z18 Tripod

2-Stage 100mm bowl carbon fiber tripod
Supports up to 133 lbs/60 kgs
Mid-level spreader & rubber feet
Weighs 8.6 lbs/3.9 kgs
 Quick-locking system with fast-action transport clips
Tripod Head 
Payload range up to 44 lbs/19.95 kgs
Quick release plate
120mm/4.29 in sliding range
1/4″-20 & 3/4″-16 screw camera plate
8 step (1-8) tilt & pan drag
+90/-75 degree tilt range
Illuminated leveling bubble
Weighs 9.2 lbs/4.18 kgs
Z8 Tripod 

2-Stage 75mm bowl aluminum   tripod
Supports up to 88 lbs/40kgs
Mid-level spreader & rubber feet
Weights 5.7 lbs/2.6 kgs
Quick-locking system with fast-action transport clips
Tripod Head 
Payload range up to 14 lbs/7 kgs
Quick release plate
60mm/2.36 in sliding range
1/4″-20 screw and locking pin camera plate
8 step (1-8) counterbalance
4 step (1-4) tilt & plan drag
+90/-75 degree tilt range
Weighs 8.6 lbs/3.9 kgs


Our Z18 model tripod is shown below with an ARRI eyepiece leveler attached to the Zacuto Axis EVF Mount and a front box from Hot Rod Camera. The mounts to attach these essential accessories are included with the Z18 tripod. See our new tripod in action in this interview from HD Video Pro magazine. (Skip to 2:25 for tripod-specific info!)

New Zacuto Gratical EVF And Tripod System At NAB 2014 from HDVideoPro Magazine on Vimeo.

When asked why he decided to invest in a Zacuto tripod, Zacuto owner and product designer Steve Weiss said, “When we created our Axis EVF mount we had always intended it to be used for both handheld and eyepiece leveling tripod/dolly use. Since releasing the Axis we realized that besides $18,000 tripods there were no tripods with eyepiece leveler capabilities. That’s a deal breaker for us because because Jens and I are used to proper Cine Style shooting and this was half of the reason for the Axis EVF mount design.”

VCT Universal Baseplate

The VCT Universal baseplate echoes a traditional “Betacam” but with a modern twist. VCT worked well for ENG cameras but modern cameras are lighter, shorter, and without a heavy tape recorder on the back and lenses are heavier than the old ENG style lenses. In general, most camera packages today have the balance point close to where the lens meets the camera body. Balanced – this places your camera virtually behind you.

The VCT Universal baseplate has sleek lines, a comfortable shoulder pad and offers incredible balance. The VCT Universal features a long track for camera placement. The rod mount is set back 3” further than on any other VCT style baseplate providing absolutely essential accessory room under your camera lens for large sensor front heavy rigs.

*Note: If you saw the VCT Universal Baseplate at NAB or CineGear, some changes in design have occurred. Please check the specs for more information.


The VCT Universal works with all cameras, including DSLRs. It’s the last baseplate you’ll ever need!

Basic Features 
13.5″ x 4.25″ x 1.75″ (LxWxH) with 6.5″ rods
Weighs 2 lbs with rods
Gel polymer shoulder pad
Two quick releasable 6.5″ rods included
Two threaded rod ports in the back
One 1/4″-20 & 3/4″-16 removable screws included
Lightweight adjustable rod mount
32mm of vertical adjustment
Adjustable tail hook to accommodate different tripod plates & adjustable to remove wiggle
Unique design creates more accessory rod capable area
V-wedge style tripod connector or directly mount your tripod plate via 1/4″-20 & 3/4″-16 screw holes
1/4″-20 screw holes along the side for accessory mounting options

Accessories for the Canon C300/C500

The new Z-Finder for C300/C500 is still front and center. Add our Z-Finder to your Canon C300 or C500 with mounting accessories like the new helmet and QR Coldshoe Handle, and these popular cameras become truly user friendly. Order here and watch the video below to find out more.

Zacuto Z-Finder and Mounts for the Canon C300 and C500 from Zacuto on Vimeo.

Impressed with the C300/500 Z-finder which I used recently on Dallas. For the documentary shooter it’s indispensable, it locks rigidly to the Canon VF moving the eye well forward where it should be. It provides great optics plus diopters all at a reasonable price.
- Rodney Charters, ASC CSC.

Rodney has been using the Z-Finder for C300/C500 with a full Zacuto Recoil shoulder mounted rig while shooting on the hit TNT show Dallas


If you have any specific questions about our new gear or or an existing product please email or call us at 312-863-3452. Stay up-to-date with our newsletter and social media - TwitterFacebook, and Vimeo.

Rachel Kenton <![CDATA[Student Filmmaker Series – Part 5: Nine Things I Learned From My Favorite Young Storytellers]]> 2014-05-29T15:39:31Z 2014-05-29T15:32:54Z StudentFilmmakerPt5MAIN
My heroes tend to live off the beaten path, in total honesty and with wild authenticity. Arkasha Stevenson, Jon Kasbe, Matt Eich and Alexandra Mihale are a few of my heroes.

I spent some time getting to know these passionate young filmmakers. Here are 9 things I learned from their beautiful, genuine musings. Visit my blog to read the full interviews.


1. Stay

Arkasha: In college, I documented the lives of two people who lived in a hotel room together. D-Ice sold crack and Pansy worked as a prostitute. I told Pansy and D-Ice that I wanted to be around for everything. One night, business was slow and Pansy began to worry that they wouldn’t be able to make rent. She had a full blown panic attack and launched into a violent dissociative episode. D-Ice tried to pin her down on the bed so she wouldn’t hurt herself. I began to slip out of the room to give them privacy. As I opened the door to leave, D-Ice turned around and said, “I thought you wanted to see everything.” I closed the door and sat back down.

Watching a pimp hold and comfort his woman was the most raw thing I had ever seen. Later, it was strange to think that my first reaction was to look away from the intimacy that I was working to document. A rule I made for myself in college was that unless I am asked to leave, I stay.

Arkasha Stevenson

Arkasha Stevenson

2. Trust your instincts 

Arkasha: I’ve always thought that an essential part of photojournalism is learning to trust your gut. It takes a lot of work to learn to trust yourself.

Jon: A brilliant lady named Cath Spangler once told me that leading an interesting life leads to interesting projects. I couldn’t agree with her more. Ideas don’t have to be fully formed or perfect. They don’t even have to be good. Students should just run with what they’re feeling at the time and see where they end up.

3. Start making work right away

Jon: I started making work right away in college. One of my first short films was The Polevaulter. I watched people cry while watching it. I felt I had created something with meaning. Something that could do something for someone.

4. Embrace the struggle

Matt: It is a constant struggle to find work that sustains me financially and creatively. Even when it is a gig I’m excited about, I’m not excited about the prospect of being apart from my family. The only thing that has allowed me to survive is the ability to be fluid and not tied to one revenue stream.

Jon: During college, I didn’t take the time to find ways to make money. I lived off free food, campus events, and favors. I became super resourceful, but now I’m left wondering: do I spend half my life writing grants to do projects I care about? Or do I do projects I don’t care about and hope I still have the drive to make the ones I do care about?

Jon Kasbe

Jon Kasbe

5. Surround yourself with creative, inspired, hard-working people

Jon: My one regret from my college years is that I didn’t take the time to really seek out people I wanted to collaborate with. Most of my projects were started and finished alone. It’s tricky to find people with both drive and time.

When I was a college first year I would email people, nicely letting them all know I’d be happy to help them out in any aspect of their production at any time. Very few of them replied, and the ones that did usually said thanks but never pulled me into their work. I can understand why now, I didn’t make it clear what I could add to their process, mostly because I didn’t know what I could add.

6. Awards come and go, but good stories will sustain your spirit

Jon: Awards are slippery slopes. Say thanks when you get them, but forget about them as quickly as you can. They’ll mess with your mind and dilute your motives. In school, the main goal was to create great work. Over the years it shifted towards treating the people I made videos about with love and care. Now it’s a hybrid of the two.

Matt: I set goals for myself, but never had expectations of the contests and grants that I applied for. You never know what to expect and can’t judge the success of your work by contests alone.

Alexandra Mihale

Alexandra Mihale

7. Turn your vulnerabilities into strengths

Alexandra: I spent my undergraduate years studying journalism in Romania and received a Fulbright scholarship to Ohio University where I studied photojournalism. I remember the first time I landed in Ohio. I arrived around midnight with a big suitcase. I asked around at the airport for a bus to take me to the University. They told me there was nothing until 10am. I was tired and dirty.

A bus picking up Chinese students on summer break had an open spot and gave me a ride. I had no where to stay and ended up spending the night on a couch belonging to one of the girls on the bus. We are still friends. Being foreign was an impediment for me at the beginning of my experience in America, but soon became an advantage.

8. Make work fun. Make fun work. Do both at the same time.

Alexandra: I actually found some of the stories and subjects while partying. I did the piece Story Of A Girl following one of my ex-roommates, who was a party girl.

Matt: I’d say to shoot first and questions will follow. The questions are the important part, and they will help shape the direction you move with your work, as well as the shape that your life takes.

Matt Eich

Matt Eich

9. Everybody gets rejected.

Jon: Only about 300 people watched my second video Bathroom Text. It was heartbreaking, but I realized I couldn’t just make a video about anything and expect it to be good. This set me on a path to creating videos about people and topics I’m interested in and care about. I decided as long as I cared, it was a project staying invested in.

Matt: In the studio I have a bunch of rejection letters taped to the back of my door. They’re a good reminder to try and try again.


Read Part 1: Five Young Storytellers You Have to Know
Read Part 2: So, You Majored in Media. Now What?
Read Part 3: One Piece At A Time: What Gear Do You Need To Make Great Film?
Read Part 4: Five Ways to Master The Post-Production Process

Stay tuned for the final Part 6: How To Make The Most Of College As A Storyteller, coming soon…


Beatriz Wallace is currently a Visiting Professor at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her friends do cool stuff like take pictures of pets that need adopting at animal shelters, make movies with famous people and tell stories that matter. She worked at Cellar Stories Bookstore and Time Magazine after she graduated from Amherst College with a degree in writing and photography. She has a Master’s Degree in Photojournalism from the University of Missouri. She’s from New Orleans and she’s kind of scrappy. She might be a juicer, a yoga teacher or a software developer next. And she’s okay with that. To see her work, visit, follow her on Twitter @bigmuddyheart or friend her on Facebook (Beatriz Wallace).